Sunday, January 29, 2012
This is my son ... nearly 19 years ago. This is the smile and laughter and light in his eyes that made me so proud to be his mom. What an amazing experience. What a frightening experience! Frightening because this life is developing its first impressions of everything in my care. I made some mistakes. But I also did some great things. And I saw great things in him ... then and now.
As the years went by and some of the mistakes went unnoticed or more mistakes were made in trying to make up for the previous ones, the laughter all but disappeared. It's been a personal heartache that the laughter changed, that the light in his eyes dimmed, and that he had to experience anything that got in the way of the amazing person God created to emerge into this world.
But I'm humbly changed and thankful and proud. On his own two feet, he is experiencing not just some hard things ... but recently some wonderful ones as well. I won't tell his story, but I will publicly say I am proud of him for following his heart.
And as I reflect on motherhood, it makes me reflect on godliness ... makes me want to be closer to God, closer to my children, and a better mother/daughter/friend/sister. I'm so horribly imperfect and a workaholic and sometimes consumed by just making it through the tough places. But I have my feet on the path. And that's a good place to be.
Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Toeholds and saplings ... small but determined holdings.
Sunday I felt a toehold in my soul and it was the sunshine of my day. Then Sunday night it seemed as if all was demolished. Like the day in the Secret Garden when we felled these trees and cleaned the branches. Before you knew it, the slender branches and trunks were lying in piles. The "destruction" was quick ... but it was a good thing.
They had been taken from areas where they were intruding, laid to the ground, stripped and sectioned ... ready to be used. These beautiful and bare branches just hours before reaching to the sky but draining the soil where the grew wild were now the building blocks of restoration and design.
They were put up, taken down, reworked, redesigned, and after all the prototypes were built and torn down, found their place in the project as the centerpiece of serenity adorned with art.
Tonight that sunshine moment started to peek through again. That toehold in my soul which was the first glimmer after months wasn't extinguished long. And even if it was torn down in repeated swaths of broken hearts around me, it is an opportunity to prepare the fallen ... to clean and make beautifully bare these new building blocks life created from the things that were growing where they were never meant to grow.
It's like beauty from ashes. Maybe my life will be a picture of this ... and end up in the centerpiece of a clever, efficient design bearing the artwork of many hands and bringing serenity to the future.
Monday, January 16, 2012
I love how when I was in England, people used the word "shattered" to describe being exhausted. Such a descriptive word!
Today, I am shattered ... but not without hope. I don't think I've ever had more happen in 24 hours EVER in my life. (Well, a couple things come close in extremes - but nothing in sheer amount combined with extremes!) I have to admit it makes me reach back into the ministry days and think that I must be doing something right to have this much chaos erupt. I don't know if that's solid thinking any more - I'd have to go study again - and right now, I'm too shattered.
I remember my grandmother's poem ... One Shattered Splinter. In the poem, she receives a gift from God (a crystal cup?) and because it wasn't what she wanted or expected, throws it down into shattered splinters. After realizing what she had done, she picked up a splinter and began to write. I'll have to find that and post it.
Photo from Havering Park in the Secret Garden with Imogen Heap, Clear Village and the Garden Angels.
Friday, January 13, 2012
My mind goes back to the "heartstrings" display at Living Arts in Tulsa. I wish I had a full view photo that did it justice! A series of suspended frames held these "heartstrings" where motion was initiated by tweets containing either "heart" or "love" (I can't remember which) where a brief opening appeared and then closed again.
I look over my life and see these myself responding to life as it unfolds ... sometimes subject to the whims around me, briefly opening and closing to the opportunities that come my way. I probably shouldn't look back too much. I wonder about the "what if" too much.
When my heartstrings are touched, I usually cry. Good, bad, inspiring, significant ... my heart is moved and tears come. And I do love that. But I wish I could just make sure it is all orchestrated well! Things move both slower and faster than I would like. I am at once impatient and dragging my feet!
I wonder if my role right now is just to yield to life, to open my heart, to breathe in the beauty around me. Moment by moment I can.
Saturday, January 07, 2012
1-2-3 ... ready ... breathe! I'm never good about coming up for air in real life, but I'm going to make myself take a moment to do so. Thanks to social media and other mobile technology, my family should at least know I'm alive!
The work roller coaster is approaching the crest and I'm about to go on a wild ride for a few months. My eyes are crossing as my to-do lists are getting longer. And not always so sure I'm on top of the big changes in my personal life. *SIGH* I've even taken to writing lists on my windows with whiteboard markers.
All those creative endeavors I was so sure I would lean on for expression while changing course are mostly lying at the wayside ... writing, photography, music, paper making, useful DIY projects (like making my own laundry detergent and essential oil dryer sheets), even just basic scrapbooking (I have TUBS and TUBS of memorabilia I need to commemorate somehow) all just make me feel tired, and thus they lie undone.
Even now, as much as I feel like I should be writing something significant, I'm mostly doing this so I can uncross my eyes and come at my monster work project again with clearer vision. And yet, maybe that's my lesson.
I need to come up for air (and sleeping doesn't count)!
Monday, January 02, 2012
Sunday, January 01, 2012
Here's hoping ... sigh ... the New Year hasn't seemed all bright and shiny or even festive yet.
This morning at church, a great emphasis was placed on the word "new" and the message was largely about fasting (before we launch into our 21 day fast - giving up something natural in pursuit of something supernatural). By the end of the service, the hole in my heart wasn't throbbing as bad as it was when I arrived.
By definition, "NEW" means "taking the place of one that came before." That would probably be an understatement this year. 2012 is new. It's taking the place of 2011. But there is much else that qualifies as "new." New relational status. New home. New family dynamic. New questions. New pursuits (or the lack thereof).
What I don't know is what exactly will take the place of "one that came before" in most anything in my life right now.
Mark 11:24 Ben Campbell Johnson (BCJ)* 24 Because of this principle, when you discover your soul's deepest desires, state them ...
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